What is a Landscape Strategy?
The primary purpose of any landscape strategy is to inform and help guide any proposed development. The creation of any strategy is underpinned by the understanding that all landscapes matter and have value. Placing landscape at the centre of any development and recognising its value ensures that all aspects relating to it are given proper consideration.
The process of researching all these aspects results in a level of understanding capable of guiding development in the most considered and effective manner possible. In addition to guiding design, a landscape strategy can be used to influence developers and the planning process by demonstrating how proposals are designed to reflect local character. Landscape strategies can also be used to promote positive change in the landscape helping to gain local support for development and possibly aid the application for funding schemes.
What’s the process?
Initially a discussion will be held with one of our landscape consultants to establish your requirements. The breadth of the landscape strategy may be dictated by the scale of your development or tailored for your specific needs.
Once this has been established a comprehensive site visit will be conducted to survey and analyse the built and natural features in the area. Where required desk-based research will be conducted to identify natural features such as geology, hydrology and topography in addition to establishing the existence of any sensitive habitats or species on site. This can further be expanded to include the creation of a habitat management plan and/or a landscape visual impact assessment. Landscape strategies seek to improve biodiversity and wildlife enhancement, wherever possible, and provide accessible routes and networks to facilitate connections (for people, plants and animals) to surrounding areas.
Furthermore, larger scale developments may require additional investigative work to help identify all stakeholders and clarify existing users and potential future users of the site. Together these findings form an understanding of local character enabling the creation of a strategy to integrate the design into the landscape, positively linking the site to its surrounding landscape through informed decision making.